Why the 2018 Ford Expedition MAX May be Our Next Large SUV

Taking The 2018 Ford Expedition Max Large Suv Camping

Don’t you love room for everyone and everything? 

Having long been a fan of large vehicles, I was really excited to spend a week with the 2018 Ford Expedition MAX and see how it fit our family. We’ve driven several 7-passenger vehicles recently, but they’ve all been in the crossover or smaller SUV families. And while I liked the Ford Flex and the Ford Explorer and some of the others, they just felt a little cramped.

While the Expedition is Ford’s largest SUV, available in 4 wheel drive or 2 wheel drive, the MAX is 9 inches longer that the standard Expedition model. This affords more cargo space behind the third row to accommodate buyers who need both people and cargo space in a full sized SUV.

I’ve been eagerly waiting to get my hands on an Expedition MAX since the reveal of the redesigned Expedition in Dallas early last year. I fell in love with it then, and having it for a week made me love it even more!

Large Suv 2018 Ford Expedition Max Review For A Girls Guide To Cars

Who this is Car For

  • Families who have older kids who need more legroom.
  • Moms and Dads who have kids in sports and need cargo space for gear and extra seats for all the kids friends
  • Anyone who travels a lot and needs extra space for luggage.

What This Car Costs

  • Base Price Starts at $54,475 for the XLT MAX.
  • Limited MAX, the model we drove,  $65,365.
  • Platinum MAX – $75,720
2018 Ford Expedition Max Large Suv

There’s lots of leg room in the back seat for kids and adults. Photo: Erica Mueller

The 2018 Ford Expedition MAX is BIG.

Two of my adult brothers live with us right now, and my dad was here for a visit when we had the SUV, so we all (5 adults and 2 kids) took a trip to town to grab some dinner. Everyone was comfortable because the 2018 Expedition MAX Limited is made to seat 7 adults comfortably. Even the 6′ 2″ guy in the 3rd row had plenty of room.

And it still had luggage space. Lots of it.

2018 Ford Expedition Max Large Suv

The third row is accessed by sliding, tilting second row seats and has lots of room in the back for passengers. Photo: Erica Mueller

You know how most 3rd row vehicles seat seven people but leave you enough cargo space to store 5 umbrellas? Ford’s designers made sure you can seat 7 and still haul the groceries. And the kids’ sports gear. I was seriously impressed.

Over the weekend we decided to take the family camping. So, hubs and I and our two kids, plus one of my brothers, loaded up and headed to Broken Bow Lake in Oklahoma for little rejuvenation. The third row folds in a 60/40 split, so we folded down one seat to make space for the huge amount of camping gear needed for 5 people. We had no problem getting a massive pile of stuff in the cargo area and we all rode comfortably to and from our campsite on the Mountain Fork River.

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Lighted mirrors make sure my makeup looks great! Photo: Erica Mueller

What We Loved

  • Great fuel economy for a large vehicle!
  • Panoramic sunroof
  • Heated and cooled front seats and heated steering wheel are standard in this model
  • Configurable cargo space
  • Auto high-beam headlamps
  • 15 cupholders
  • Ambient lighting
  • Power folding seats
2018 Ford Expedition Max Large Suv

The rear center console on the Ford Expedition Max has climate control, radio controls and a household plug. Photo: Erica Mueller

What You Need to Know

  • Seating for 7-8 adults: 7 with center row captains chairs or 8 with a center row bench
  • Pick your drive option: All wheel drive or rear 2 wheel drive
  • Rear climate controls
  • WiFi hotspot is standard but you need a data package to activate it
  • Available 2nd-row entertainment package
  • 28.3 gallon fuel tank
  • EPA estimates 17MPG city/23 MPG highway
  • Regular fuel recommended
Trying That Car-Selfie Thing Large Suv Photo: Erica Mueller

Trying that car-selfie thing. Failing. Photo: Erica Mueller

The Expedition MAX Isn’t a Truck. Or Is it?

I’m a huge fan of trucks and I think that’s why I instantly fell in love with the all-new Expedition. When you’re in the driver’s seat, you could almost forget you’re in an SUV. And that’s a good thing for this truck-loving girl. You’re sitting up high. The steering wheel is substantial.

The handling is like that of a nice truck… just the right amount of bounce and sway in the suspension to not feel like a limo. Don’t get me wrong. It’s a very comfortable ride, even for long distances. But you get the sense that you’re driving something powerful, something that could haul the fishing boat or family camper with ease. And with its Heavy-Duty Trailer Tow Package and Trailer Sway Control, which keeps you from veering from your lane, it totally can.

And if you fold all the seats down, the Expedition MAX can hold about as much as a pickup truck. Hello, Costco haul!

Don’t need this much space? You can get the regular Expedition, which takes about 9 inches out of the cargo area.

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Who'S Ready For The Big Monthly Coscto Haul? This Expedition Max Large Suv. Photo: Erica Mueller

Who’s ready for the big monthly Costco haul? This Expedition MAX. Photo: Erica Mueller

The 2018 Expedition MAX is Nothing Like a Truck on the Inside

Panoramic sunroof, leather-trimmed heated and ventilated front seats, power folding rear seats, cabin particulate air filter, 12 Harman speakers, wireless charging in the front console, WiFi hotspot, and the list goes on. You get every creature comfort of a high-end luxury SUV in a vehicle that is completely practical for a family.

2018 Ford Expedition Max Large Suv

The panoramic sunroof lets front and back passengers enjoy the sun. Photo: Erica Mueller

Seat 7 or 8 with the second-row option of either 2 bucket seats, or a for an extra passenger, a 40/20/40 split center row with seats that tip an slide forward to allow access to the third row. You’ll also have the option to add-on a second-row entertainment system which includes screens in the backs of the front seats’ headrests so the kids can watch movies on the go.

Multiple devices? No problem! I counted 6 USB chargers and a household plug in the Limited MAX we drove.

2018 Ford Expedition Max Large Suv

The redesigned dial gear selector leaves more space for other options, like the drive mode selector, a cubby for change and park assist buttons.

Would We Buy One?

That’s a yes! I honestly hadn’t considered a large vehicle like this before as an option because we spend a lot of time on the road and I figured it would be horrible on gas. But I was surprised. And, my family really enjoyed our week in this vehicle –they just keep talking about it. So, my crush may soon become our next family car.

Monroney For The 2018 Ford Expedition Max Limited

Monroney for the 2018 Ford Expedition MAX Limited

Disclosure: The Ford Expedition Max was provided for this review. All opinions are my own.

A web developer, digital marketing consultant, auto journalist, truck expert, photographer and lover of gadgets, Erica is a textbook... More about Erica Mueller